Léo Vrinks and Denis Klein (Daniel Auteuil, Gérard Depardieu), heads of two rivaling police departments, compete for the job of Chief of Police while also trying to find a gang of ruthless robbers in Paris. France’s answer to Heat (1995) features dynamic performances from two of the nation’s most popular stars as well as exciting street battles between cops and heavily armed criminals. As the rivalry between Klein and Vrinks (who are both far from lily-white) builds, so does tension in this well-crafted thriller. The story was actually drawn from real-life events, although many changes have been made for the sake of clearer conflicts.
2004-France. 111 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Franck Chorot, Cyril Colbeau-Justin, Jean-Baptiste Dupont. Directed by Olivier Marchal. Screenplay: Olivier Marchal, Franck Mancuso, Julien Rappeneau. Cast: Daniel Auteuil (Léo Vrinks), Gérard Depardieu (Denis Klein), André Dussollier (Robert Mancini), Roschdy Zem, Valeria Golino, Daniel Duval.
Trivia: Original title: 36 Quai des Orfèvres.
Last word: “I wanted what happened to Leo Vrinks (the part played by Daniel Auteuil) to be as bad and as monstrous as what really happened to Dominique Loiseau. Dominique lost everything in prison: his wife, his friends, his career – which was his reason for living – his dignity and much else that I have no right to mention. He could have been consumed with hate. He preferred instead to draw a line under those lost years. He worked on my film as a chauffeur for the actors. The cast and crew appreciated his kindness and professionalism.” (Marchal, Cinema.com)